Academic Year 1999/00

The University has been pleased to welcome the following Honorary Graduands in the academic year 1999/2000:

Brigadier Maurice Atherton CBE JP DL DCL

Maurice Atherton’s family motto is ‘servare munia vitae’: he has devoted himself with remarkable energy to the duty of a life of service in both the military and civilian spheres.

Following his education at St John’s School, Leatherhead, and the Staff College at Camberley, Maurice Atherton was commissioned into the East Yorkshire Regiment in 1946, and served in Egypt, Sudan, Malaysia, Austria and Germany. His distinguished career included periods as: Military Assistant to the Commander of British Forces, Hong Kong; College Chief Instructor at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst; Commanding Officer of the Green Howards, on of the oldest and still unamalgamated British regiments; and Commander of the Shorncliffe Garrison and Deputy Constable of Dover Castle.

Maurice Atherton’s public service record is equally impressive, including long periods as a Justice of the Peace on the Dover Bench and as county President of the Royal British Legion. He was High Sheriff of Kent in 1983-84. Having first been appointed to the Governing Body of the College in 1983, Maurice Atherton was Chairman from 1994-99, and oversaw the institution’s attainment of University College status.

He was awarded the CBE in 1981, is a Deputy Lieutenant of Kent, and received his Honorary Doctorate in Civil Law in 1996.

Mr Chandu Christian MA DMS Dip Ed

Chandu Christian was born in 1939, the son of the head master of an Indian village mission school. He attended a town high-school which saw itself as the temple of Saraswati, the Hindu goddess of education. The Christian community in which he lived served as a haven for people on both sides in Hindu-Muslim riots surrounding Indian independence. His upbringing and experience fitted him perfectly for the YMCA with its focus on youth and education and its strong opposition to conflict between races and religions.

As a lecturer at the YMCA George Williams College from 1971 and then as Principal from 1991 to 1997, Chandu Christian, by his example and by his influence, advanced the cause of informal education. He vigorously promoted the view that management of people was about allowing them to take control and to utilise their own resources. He worked to achieve autonomous status for the College and developed distance learning courses which extended its influence throughout this county and the world.

Chandu Christian was deeply involved in spreading expertise and developing an infrastructure for youth work in Uganda and in many other African countries. His contribution extended beyond building up the YMCA. In the early nineties he was invited to South Africa to work with youth organisations and to help construct the Youth Work Mandate which was accepted by the new government as the basis of its youth programme.

He has received the Metropolitan Regional Award of Merit for Services to the YMCA.

Mr David Coupe Dipl.Arch.Cant., A.R.I.B.A.

David Coupe was born in Lancashire in 1940, but has spent most of his life in Canterbury studying and later working as an architect in the city. After a brief globetrotting architectural career, building banks in Greece and overseeing European airport buildings for BOAC, he was persuaded to return to Canterbury, where he set up in private practice, first on his own and then with his partner, John Pateman.

Pateman and Coupe have served the city by consistently following the Modernist ideal of simplicity. Their buildings, which are designed to make real use of space and daylight, incorporate three fundamental principles: they are substantial; they are suited to their purpose and they are places that people can enjoy.

In 1979 David Coupe effectively became the College Architect and in 1980 produced a long term development plan for the campus. This encapsulated a vision of how the site could ultimately be developed into a structured series of buildings and open spaces which related to each other: a vision now almost complete. The Student Union Building, the extended Library Building, the Professional Development Building and the Information Technology, Paramedical, Nursing, Resource Based Learning and RFTV Buildings each have individual personalities, but all contribute to an overall design. Only the Old Sessions House, which has recently been acquired by the College and has extended the original campus, was not foreseen in the plan of 1980. Supported in recent years by the imaginative work of the College gardeners, David Coupe has created a College environment which stands out above many other modern higher education campuses.

David Coupe also taught for twenty-eight years as a member of the innovative team at Canterbury School of Architecture and has served on the Administrative Council of the European Association for Architectural Education.


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Last edited: 05/12/2017 00:39:00